Libum Bread Recipe: Back to the Romans!

libum roman bread with rosemary

Today we'll dip into Italian history, or better, into Roman history, to discover a fantastic ancient roman dessert recipes: the Libum.

What is Libum? Libum was a type of bread, or even better an ancient roman cheesecake recipe usually dedicated to Jupiter by spouses during their wedding celebration, or more often offered to the gods as a libation in occasion of sacrifices. 
You can use ricotta, or choose other types of soft cheeses with a sharper flavor like Stracchino or a goat cheeses. You can also choose whether to prepare a single Libum cheesecake, similar to a focaccia (and this was the preferred solution in ancient Rome) or make many small rolls. Serve with salami or cheeses as an appetizer, or with dried fruit or hone for a dessert.

Pompei fresco with a Roman table

How to Make Libum Bread

  • In a bowl mix ricotta with egg, flour and salt until you get a well-mixed mixture. 
  • Take a baking pan, pour a spool of extra virgin olive oil and lay over a generous layer of rosemary, bay and sage. If you prefer the rolls to the focaccia, place just some bay leaves.
  • Take the dough make small rolls or a sort of focaccia base.
  • Lay the bread on the baking pan. Cook in the oven already hot at 400 F° for about 40 minutes.
  • Once cooked, remove from the oven and let the libum bread cool before serving.

Serve with cheese, salami, honey, dried fruit or eat it as is.

Image: Roman Cheese Bread, CC BY 2.0